12 Jun 2016 20:00pm
OKAHANDJA, 12 JUN (NAMPA) The disputes over leadership and chieftaincy within some traditional communities must become something of the past, former President Hifikepunye Pohamba has said.
He was addressing hundreds of Ovambanderu people gathered at Okahandja on Sunday to commemorate the 120th commemoration of the Battle of Otjunda and execution of Chief Kahimemua Nguvauva at Okahandja on 12 June 1896.
Pohamba said internal squabbles lead to disunity and divert the focus from addressing the multiple socio-economic challenges facing communities.
We are pursuing the second phase of the struggle in order to combat poverty and inequality, and to improve the socio-economic well-being of all our people, he said.
He appealed to the Ovambanderu Traditional Authority and other traditional communities to always strive for unity, peace and reconciliation amongst their subjects.
Pohamba noted that such attributes should serve as the cornerstone in the process of building a prosperous and inclusive Namibian nation.
The former Namibian president also said traditional authorities are expected to play a critical role in the socio-economic development of the country, promoting peace and assisting government in the planning and implementation of their developmental policies and programmes within the areas of their jurisdiction.
I call upon the Ovambanderu leadership to inculcate a culture of love and care amongst your community member based on our common cultural norms and values, he said.
Members of the Mbanderu community, clad in their predominantly green attire, flocked to Okahandja to honour and pay tribute to the martyrs of the war against German oppression, including Kahimemua Nguvauva and Nicodemus Kavikunua.
Nguvauva led his Ovambanderu community in resistance against German colonial occupation in battles at Gobabis and Otjunda in the Omaheke Region, amongst others in the 1890s.
The commemoration started at around 08h00 with traditional rituals, a parade of troops and horses en route to the Ovambanderu sacred burial site here, where Nguvauva and other Ovambanderu heroes are buried.